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  1. #1
    Trufflehunter's Avatar
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    Default Reed diffuser carrier

    What carrier would be used in a reed diffuser? Surely not ethanol: the potential for fire would be huge. Is it dipropylene glycol or some other esoteric mix?

    I've tried making one once. I bought a cheap diffuser, supposedly "Frangipani". It smellt nothing like frangipani and it was extremely weak. So I thought, having this ready-made base, I could add some of my own essential oils, which dissolved fine in whatever the carrier was. It all seemed to work fine, but after a while, as the dissolved oils worked their way up the reeds and the carrier evaporated, the reeds became choked with an 'oily sludge'.

    There are obviously some secrets to the making of reed diffusers that I need to explore!

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Reed diffuser carrier

    The basic carrier for reed diffusers is a combination of DPG and ethanol. You can vary the proportions according to how fast you want the material to evaporate from the reeds. Some isopropyl myristate is often also included and sometimes other things, but a basic mix of 7 parts DPG to 3 parts ethanol is a good place to start.

    Speaking of reeds they don't last forever: they clog, particularly if your fragrance contains some of the larger molecules; heavier, stickier oils, including many base notes.

    You'll also find you need quite a lot of fragrance material - essential oils, aroma chemicals etc - to get a good effect. Especially if you use a lot of natural ingredients. You will find you need to put in as much as 30% fragrance: far more than you would in a typical EdT, so they don't work out cheap. On the other hand the one on the market that are cheap smell pretty awful, which rather defeats the point.

    I'm about to launch a new range of reed diffuser fragrances myself so I've been doing all the research for some months now. One of the things that seems to be missed by most of the sellers / makers of these is how short-lived the reeds are - I'm planning on offering bundles of reeds for sale so that customers can easily replace them when they get clogged.

    Hope that helps
    Chris Bartlett
    Perfumes from the edge . . .

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  3. #3
    David Ruskin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Reed diffuser carrier

    Sorry to disagree Chris, but DPG is the wrong solvent for reed diffusers. DPG is not especially volatile, and it attracts water. The best solvents to use are sold under the name Dowanol, there are several.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Reed diffuser carrier

    Dowanol is a brand name and registered trade mark owned by Dow: it applies to a product range of 13 different chemical solvents each with very different chemical properties - some hydrophilic, some hydrophobic, some volatile, some slow evaporating. Which one are you using?

    DPG (also sold by Dow btw, but not a brand name they own) is less hydrophilic than ethanol and it's low volatility is partly the point - in balance with ethanol it allows you to manipulate the rate of evaporation to the level you desire.
    Chris Bartlett
    Perfumes from the edge . . .

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    If you are looking for a perfumery consultation Iím happy to quote: if you want free advice, thatís what these forums are for
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  5. #5
    David Ruskin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Reed diffuser carrier

    Chris, using DPG just doesn't work in a reed diffuser; I've tried. Two Dowanols were used; DPM and TPM. Another solvent that can be used in IsoPar H, but it is harder to use as their are fewer materials that are soluble in it. Using Dowanol TPM and DPM, the rate of evaporation may be easily controlled, however the actual fragrant part of the mix (usually 20.0%) should be very carefully constructed as several materials will stop the other materials from evaporating.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Reed diffuser carrier

    David,
    First up, DPG alone certainly won't work but if you use the formula I gave in my first response it does: I do extensive testing before I launch anything and I've produced dozens of them that I have had in use all round my own home and the homes of my testing panel for about 8 months now: they work and what's more they work over an extended period. I'd really recommend you go back and look at it again.

    DPM is dipropylene glycol mono methyl ether - I use it regularly as a co-solvent and cleaning agent. It has a very high evaporation rate and might well make a good reed diffuser carrier if you can successfully cover its metalic smell. I normally use it in very low proportions in water-based room sprays where its inherent aroma is easily covered.

    TPM is trypropylene glycol mono methyl ether - not something I use particularly but it's similar to DPM but with a much slower evaporation rate. I don't think it has a strong smell but as I remember it's a bit meths like.

    Isopar H is again a brand name for a type of liquid paraffin mainly used in printing but also as an ignition agent in firelighters - it isn't something I've ever used but I see from the specifications that it is virtually odourless, which would be good, but if it's like most liquid paraffin's I'm not surprised you've had trouble getting things to dissolve in it. I don't think I'd want to use it alone in a reed diffuser in view of the flammability.

    I'm sure using a combination of those will work, but you are paying a premium for the brand names (these chemicals are widely available from multiple suppliers) and you have to cover the smell of the agents, whereas DPG is completely odourless, non-flammable (even with 30% ethanol in it) and dissolves all the fragrance ingredients you are likely to want to use - I only have any trouble with things like CO2 extractions, which are too expensive for use in reed diffusers generally anyway.

    Your point about choosing ingredients with care is absolutely right - that and getting the price right is what's been taking up time in my research programme.
    Chris Bartlett
    Perfumes from the edge . . .

    www.perfumedesigner.co.uk
    Twitter: @PellWallPerfume

    If you are looking for a perfumery consultation Iím happy to quote: if you want free advice, thatís what these forums are for
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  7. #7
    David Ruskin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Reed diffuser carrier

    Whatever. I also speak from experience, and the many customers who have bought these fragrances have never complained. I know what DPM and TPM stand for, also Iso Par H (and M). I would never use Iso Par H on its own in a reed diffuser, but it can be used together with Dowanol to regulate evaporation rate. The major problem with the Dowanols is their inherent smell; usually, however, this isn't noticeable in use (i.e in the air). I still think that if you use DPG, after everything else has evaporated it will still be sitting in the bottom of the container.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Reed diffuser carrier

    Interesting discussion. I am looking for a carrier for a fragrance to be used in a reed diffuser. There does not seem to be much info on the subject on the web. Also, fragrance suppliers I am working with claim to have a "proprietary blend carrier" that they will sell me mixed with a specified fragrance.

    So, since I have already secured the fragrance supply, I am now searching for a CARB compliant carrier and came across this Dupont chemical, DOWANOL DPnP and DOWANOL DPMA. At this link: https://dow-answer.custhelp.com/app/...ance-diffusers

    This is not the same as the DPM that you has been mentioned in this thread.

    Does anyone have any experience working with this new DPMA or DPnP? Rather than paying for a "proprietary blend," I think that I can just mix a 50/50 blend of DPMA and fragrance and be CARB compliant.

    Thoughts?

  9. #9
    David Ruskin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Reed diffuser carrier

    The two Dowanols you mention (DPNP and DPMA) do not fall foul of the various American laws which govern the use of Volatile Organic Compounds. We used to use them when compounding ready to use Reed Diffuser fragrances for America. The same laws don't apply in Europe. I'm afraid I cannot remember the details but you have to use less than a certain amount of VOCs, and if only DPM or TPM are used then you go over the limit. Depending on how many VOCs were present in the fragrance concentrate we would vary the amount of solvents accordingly. The "proprietary blend" you mention will probably be calculated to conform to CARB compliancy. The usual concentration of fragrance is still 20.0%. I don't think I have ever used just DPNP or DPMA ob their own; try it and see.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Reed diffuser carrier

    I'm agree with David.
    I have ever used DPG alone, it works well but there is some oil left when alcohol has fully evaporated.
    This is not accepted by almost customer. The advantage of DPG is easier find than DPGME and easy to control evaporation.
    But now I've use the combination of DPG and DPGME, it's great!
    Less oil left, constant evaporate.
    I have used just 10% fragrance oil for formulation but it have to be the fragrance for making reed diffuser only.
    No perfect perfume without Bias.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Reed diffuser carrier

    My supplier advised me to use DEP because it would be absorbed and released by reeds easier and would leave less residue than DPG. True or false?

  12. #12
    David Ruskin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Reed diffuser carrier

    False. DEP is even less volatile than DPG. Dowanols are the solvents of choice.

  13. #13

    Default Re: Reed diffuser carrier

    Can DPG & Ethanol used as solvent in Car/Auto Air Freshners,as the evaporation takes place using a capillary wick.

  14. #14
    David Ruskin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Reed diffuser carrier

    Probably, although I would still stick to the Dowanols, even for this application.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Reed diffuser carrier

    Quote Originally Posted by David Ruskin View Post
    Probably, although I would still stick to the Dowanols, even for this application.
    Can you suggest some formulations for Distilled Water based Self Evaporating Auto Perfumes.What Solvents,Solubilizers & Stablizers are preferred for Water based perfume formulations.

  16. #16
    David Ruskin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Reed diffuser carrier

    Depends how much water and how much fragrance. Most perfumery materials are not water soluble, most solubilisers are not volatile. Carbitol, or DPG can be used. Ethanol too. BHT is a good antioxidant.

  17. #17

    Default Re: Reed diffuser carrier

    An interesting development:

    Aiming to solve some of the problems people experience when using reed diffusers, Alpha Aromatics introduced its new Flow Science reed diffuser rods and diffuser oils. The patent-pending technology is applied to slender rod reeds, which are available in any length and diameter. Rather than wicking diffuser oil from a container, the reeds actually hold the diffuser oil within themselves without any free liquid to spill, even when tilted 180 degrees.
    Each Flow Science reed is designed to contain specially formulated diffuser oil in its reservoir core, and a capillary system carries the liquid up and out, flowing onto a secondary wicking surface. From there, the scent diffuses consistently over time.
    And complementing the development of this delivery system are Alpha's new proprietary diffuser oil bases crafted to match the unique physics of the new reeds. Alpha Aromatics' chief perfumer Roger Howell commented, "We've done exhaustive lab and panel testing to arrive at the perfect formula. We've been able to marry trend-setting fragrances with this new technology. The result is a reed-diffusing product that will build brand loyalty and repeat sales based on superior performance."



    http://www.perfumerflavorist.com/net...=Related+Items

  18. #18
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    Default Re: Reed diffuser carrier

    Doesn't sound like the fragrance would last very long?

  19. #19
    David Ruskin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Reed diffuser carrier

    Thanks for the advert julian. Presumable as this system is "patent pending" it won't be generally available for others to try and use.

  20. #20

    Default Re: Reed diffuser carrier

    Hi David , What % mix of TPM and DPM is best for a carrier in reed diffusers.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Who has used PET fibre sticks in replacement for Rattan reeds in Reed Diffusers, and what are your experiences??

  21. #21
    David Ruskin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Reed diffuser carrier

    Quote Originally Posted by Charisma View Post
    Hi David , What % mix of TPM and DPM is best for a carrier in reed diffusers.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Who has used PET fibre sticks in replacement for Rattan reeds in Reed Diffusers, and what are your experiences??
    The general mix is 20.0% fragrance, 60.0% DPM, 30.0% TPM . This will, of course depend, on the type of fragrance used. Always a good idea to plot an evaporation graph where possible, to check if the mix is going too fast, or too slow.

    I know nothing about PET fibres.

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